A Use For Horse Hair

Tufted titmouse collecting horse hair for its nest (photo by Marianne Atkinson)

Many birds use animal hair to line their nests.

After grooming her horse, Marianne Atkinson put the excess hair in her suet feeder.

The tufted titmice appreciated her thoughtfulness.

Someone’s going to have a soft bed. 🙂


(photo by Marianne Atkinson)

5 thoughts on “A Use For Horse Hair

  1. When I know it’s that time of year for nest building, I usually leave short (4-6″) strands of yarn draped over branches of scrubs and bushes for the birds to find. Also, after doing a load of laundry *without fabric softener*, I’ll leave clumps of dryer lint for the birds to use. I’m always amazed when I stumble upon an empty nest and find all sorts of odd materials that the parents managed to utilize. They are truly winged architects and engineers!

  2. Mary, that is great that you put nest materials out for bird nests! I have heard that dryer lint is not good because once it gets wet in a nest, it doesn’t dry out very well. That isn’t good for baby birds.

    One could also use hair from dog grooming. If one doesn’t have access to dog hair, maybe it could be obtained from a professional dog groomer…

    I have found the silvery soft “icicle” strands in nests that one puts on Christmas trees!

  3. Last winter we had a deer bed down under our Redbud shrub and die. It then was covered by deep snow and weeks later I found it when we had a thaw. After the deer was removed a large amount of deer hair was left behind. When nest building season arrived I saw several birds collecting the hair and now there is almost none left.

  4. I am having real problems with crows who are attacking my highland pony and making her back bleed to get the hair off her I have tried rugging her however she hates the rugs and I am also concerned that the crows could give her something any suggestions

    1. Hazel, I’ve heard of this before. The crows will stop when the nest is finished but you’ve got a problem in the meantime. Perhaps if you brush her and offer the horsehair in an easy to reach location (especially while she is rugged) the crows will get the hint. All they want is the hair.

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